DAILY LLAMA NEWS FROM 2002

 

Sideshow Toy to Release More Monty Python & The Holy Grail Action Figures
In follow-up to their wildly successful Monty Python & the Holy Grail action figures, SideShow Toy will be releasing additional Holy Grail action figures this year! Wednesday, 13 February 2002

John Cleese to be Honoured at Banff TV Festival
John Cleese will be presented this year's Sir Peter Ustinov / Comedy Network Award at the 2002 Banff Television Festival. Thursday, 21 February 2002

Comedians to Pay Tribute to Spike Milligan in Channel 4 Show
John Cleese, Robin Williams and Michael Palin will pay tribute to Spike Milligan in a TV special on Britain's Channel 4 on March 2 at 9pm. Spike died two days after this announcement, so the tribute is fitting. Monday, 25 February 2002

No BAFTA Win for Harry Potter, But Cleese Featured
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's/Sorcerer's Stone failed to win in any of the seven BAFTA categories for which it was nominated. Cleese did participate in a comedy sketch with Pierce Brosnan honoring 40 years of James Bond. Monday, 25 February 2002

Simply Spike
On 28 February, Michael Palin published his tribute "Simply Spike" in The Guardian. Thursday, 28 February 2002

Pythons' Tribute to Goon Legend Spike Milligan
Here follows Darryn Hall's tribute on PythOnline the week following Spike Milligan's death. It includes a short piece written by Terry Gilliam exclusively for PythOnlne. Thursday, 7 March 2002

New John Cleese Sitcom to Debut on ABC March 27
John Cleese will star (from time to time it seems) in a new situation comedy for ABC with the ridiculously silly title Wednesday 9:30 (8:30 Central) which will begin airing this month on March 27. Fittingly, the show airs Wednesday's at 9:30 (8:30 Central). Friday, 8 March 2002

Barry Took, Monty Python's Godfather, Gravely Ill
Friends fear that Barry Took, 73, does not have long to live. Tuesday, 12 March 2002

John Cleese is "Q" in "Die Another Day"
The producers of the new James Bond movie, until now simply known as "Bond 20," said Tuesday that it has been titled "Die Another Day." Wednesday, 13 March 2002

I'm So Worried About...
Funny quote from Michael in The Times, London. Wednesday, 20 March 2002

Dudley Moore Dies
British-born actor and comedian Dudley Moore died at his home in New Jersey this morning. What a blow to British comedy. First Spike and now Dudley. Both paved paths for the Pythons to do their stuff. Thursday, 28 March 2002

Dudley Moore, Pianist and Lovable Comic, Dies Aged 66
There are no shortage of articles on Dudley today. It is hard to point to a single good tribute, they are all wonderful, so I just nicked this one from The Telegraph, which I thought was very nice. Thursday, 28 March 2002

Monty Python's Godfather, Barry Took, Dies at 73
British television executive, comedian, and writer Barry Took died today. His illustrious career also included bringing together the founding members of Monty python. Sunday, 31 March 2002

Nike Launches Terry Gilliam's World Cup Ad
Nike unveiled Terry Gilliam's elaborate 2002 World Cup television commercial, April 4. The three-minute film is about a secret tournament involving 25 of the world's best soccer players. Sunday, 7 April 2002

John Cleese Reacts to ABC Cancellation of "Wednesday 9:30" Sitcom
John says network executives are too conservative and afraid of ratings. Tuesday, 9 April 2002

Terry Jones - Back in the Hospital
Terry Jones is in the hospital, having recently undergone surgery. Here is what Darryn Hall posted on PythOnline recently. Wednesday, 10 April 2002

New Monty Python & Holy Grail Computer Game!
Here is a hilarious and NEW Monty Python and the Holy Grail video game. Available at classiccomedy.net, a comedy website run by Richard Bentine. Friday, 12 April 2002

John Has Last Laugh On Critics Who Axed His Show
John Cleese says that he is not angry about the cancellation of the ABC sitcom Wednesday 9:30 (8:30 Central) which was pulled from ABC's lineup after just two episodes. He talks about the nature of successful situation comedies. The Express Monday, 15 April 2002

Production Begins on Disney's "The Soul Patrol" Starring Eric Idle
Production has begun on "The Soul Patrol", a new Disney Channel Movie starring Eric Idle, Tommy Davidson, and Kathy Najimy as a trio of spirits who help two teens fight a local legend who's come back from the dead, seeking revenge on a town. Disney Channel Press Release Thursday, 25 April 2002

John Cleese Had "Terrific Fun" on Set of New James Bond Film
John Cleese told the Calgary Sun recently about his time on the set of the new James Bond film, Die Another Day. "I am Q now -- I actually have a name," says Cleese. Cleese takes over the role from the late Desmond Llewelyn who died in a tragic car accident December 1999. Saturday, 27 April 2002

Hallmark Entertainment Producing Terry Gilliam's Time Bandits Sequel
British film magazine SFX reports in its April 2002 issue that Hallmark Entertainment has bought the rights to produce two 2-hour television sequels to Terry Gilliam's 1981 cult-classic Time Bandits and will begin filming in August. Read about the history of TB2 and the plot! Thursday, 9 May 2002

Terry Jones in the Flesh
After his recent health scare which sent him into the hospital for a short time, Terry Jones is now doing so well, he wants to share the experience with us. Now, for the first time, you can see the insides of Mr. Creosote... and we're not kidding! Warning, graphic operation photos of Mr. Jones' intestines enclosed. Thanks to Darryn Hall and Pythonline for... erm... sharing. Thursday, 9 May 2002

Eric Idle to Attend May 29 Monty Python Screening at L.A.'s Museum of Television & Radio
Eric Idle passed along some info about an event this month at the Museum of Television & Radio in case any were interested in attending. Eric will be there to introduce screenings of some rare material and will take questions from the audience. Friday, 10 May 2002

The Real Sybil Fawlty Weighs in on "Fawlty Towers"
The real-life Sybil Fawlty has broken her silence for the first time in more than 30 years to defend her late husband, the hotel owner on whom John Cleese based the character Basil Fawlty. Monday, 13 May 2002

Film About Graham Chapman in the Works
Independent film company Hippofilms is developing a $10 million film based on the life story of Graham Chapman. The film will most likely be called Gin and Tonic and will begin principal photography this November in London and Cambridge. Monday, 13 May 2002

Terry Jones Lends Voice to ABC's Dinotopia
He flew in sort of under the radar, but Terry Jones was featured in a small cameo in ABC's Dinotopia, the most expensive television film ever made. Monday, 13 May 2002

Python Bites Back at Sybil Fawlty
Here are excerpts from another article about Betty Sinclair and her reaction to John Cleese's portrayal of Basil Fawlty (inspired by her husband) in the British sitcom Fawlty Towers. I found this interesting as it also quotes reactions by John Cleese and Michael Palin. Tuesday, 14 May 2002

John Cleese Signs to Star in "The Shoot"
John Cleese has signed on to star in an Australian film called The Shoot. Produced by Jigsaw Entertainment, the comedy is written by Josh Goldin and Bruce Hancock. Tuesday, 14 May 2002

Members of Monty Python Collaborating on One Final Book
In early anticipation of Monty Python's 35th anniversary, Orion Publishing Group will be publishing a new coffee table book called Monty Python by the Pythons. The book will be written and produced by all of the Pythons, including the Estate of Graham Chapman. The book has been three years in the making and is expected to go into worldwide circulation on September 24, 2003. Wednesday, 15 May 2002

Cleese Cameos in Eddie Murphy's "Pluto Nash"
John Cleese has been listed in the cast of this summer's Eddie Murphy sci-fi comedy Pluto Nash (in theaters August 16). John Cleese allegedly voices the robot chauffeur who carts around Eddie Murphy's character. Thursday, 16 May 2002

Palin's [Gossip] Column
I hadn't reported on Michael Palin in a while, so I trolled through some dustbins and dug up several juicy tidbits on Michael from the gossip columns of U.K.'s finest newspapers... Friday, 17 May 2002

Michael Palin Not Done Traveling?
Michael Palin talks to Vanya Kewley of the Sunday Times about his wanderlust. He describes some of his earliest travels, some of his favorite places, what motivates his desire for discovery, and what might be next. Friday, 17 May 2002

Waitress Says Fawlty Towers Was Funny... And True
The debate over whether Gleneagles Hotel manager Mr. Donald Sinclair was anything like Basil Fawlty rages on... A letter and a series of articles were published this past weekend concerning Rosemary Harrison's experiences as a waitress at the Torquay-based hotel in 1973. Tuesday, 21 May 2002

Cleese Unhappy With Evening Standard Article
The Financial Times reported today that John Cleese is threatening to sue the Evening Standard for running a nasty article about John's career. Somehow journalist Pete Clark felt it necessary to share his personal dislike of Cleese's films... or perhaps to blame California for having knicked one-too-many sunny days, not to mention Cleese too. Tuesday, 21 May 2002

Eric Idle's Naughty Bits
Toronto's Globe and Mail interviewed Eric Idle on the set of Disney Channel's new film Soul Patrol, in which Eric portrays the ghost of Coffin Ed, a British soldier from the American War of Independence. Eric talks about sex and the nature of comedy. Saturday, 25 May 2002

Guests, Hoteliers, and Manuel Fuel Fawlty Gate
In what is being called Fawlty Gate, the controversy rages on over whether the Gleneagles Hotel and its manager in the early 1970s, Mr. Donald Sinclair, were anything like Cleese's sitcom Fawlty Towers. Letters have come in from hotel owners, guests who experienced Mr. Sinclair first-hand, and even a waiter who says he was the real-life inspiration for Manuel. Sunday, 26 May 2002

Gilliam Meets the Queen
Terry Gilliam and 600 other celebrity guests came out for a reception on May 22nd honoring the Queen. The Queen was on hand to mix with the stars at London's Royal Academy of Arts for the Golden Jubilee, celebrating Elizabeth II's 50 years of queendom. Monday, 27 May 2002

Canada's Comedy Network Hosts Monty Python Events This June
The Comedy Network of Canada will be airing all 45 episodes of Monty Python's Flying Circus starting on June 17. They also plan to run a Python-a-thon Festival and will be honoring John Cleese with a special award at the Banff Television Festival on June 10. Tuesday, 28 May 2002

Eric Idle to Direct Merchant-Ivory Spoof
Eric Idle is to direct a film parody of British period dramas. The Remains Of The Piano will star Geoffrey Rush and will hopefully be shot in Toronto this summer. Wednesday, 29 May 2002

Rhys Ifans Wanted for Film About Graham Chapman
The producers of a new film about Graham Chapman hope to persuade Rhys Ifans to play him. Jim Yoakum tells Ananova that an open casting call will be held for actors to play the young Pythons. Wednesday, 29 May 2002

John Cleese Visits Lemurs at San Francisco Zoo
John Cleese was in San Francisco this past Sunday for a special visit to the San Francisco Zoo. The Daily Llama was there for the exclusive event! Cleese headlined an informal ceremony to inaugurate the Lipman Family Lemur Forest, a new enclosure that will be the world's largest outdoor exhibit for this endangered species. Thursday, 13 June 2002

John Cleese Lands Role in Shrek 2
John Cleese has landed a role in Shrek 2, the sequel to Dreamworks' animated comedy adventure. Cleese will supply the voice of Princess Fiona's father in the sequel, which is scheduled to debut Memorial Day weekend, 2004. Thursday, 13 June 2002

"Rematch," The Sequel to Terry Gilliam's "Secret Tournament" Airs
On June 1, Nike began airing two further "Secret Tournament" commercials directed by Terry Gilliam. The ads, a 30 and 60-second spot called "Rematch," are part of Nike's World Cup campaign and were shot by Gilliam in January in Rome. Tuesday, 18 June 2002

Lost in La Mancha Chronicles The Un-Making of Terry Gilliam's Don Quixote
Lost in La Mancha premiered on 11 February at the 2002 Berlin Film Festival and is making the film festival circuit this summer. This June 6th article, from The Scotsman, is a great account of the documentary and Gilliam's failed project The Man Who Killed Don Quixote. Wednesday, 19 June 2002

ABC Show Starring Cleese Offends Parents of Adopted Children
Even though the cancelled sitcom My Adventures in Television (formerly Wednesdays 9:30 (8:30 Central)) has only aired five times, the June 5 episode nevertheless managed to seriously offend parents with adopted Chinese children. Even advertisers have pulled commercials from that timeslot. Wednesday, 19 June 2002

Dispute with the Gilliams Next Door
From the June 18 London Evening Standard: Terry Gilliam's next door neighbors and the Highgate Society are upset with Gilliam's plans to build a futuristic roof extension on his house in South Grove. Thursday, 20 June 2002

John Cleese Receives Award at Banff TV Festival
John Cleese was in Banff, Canada recently to receive the Sir Peter Ustinov/Comedy Network Award at the 2002 Banff TV Festival. John was also interviewed live about his perspective on his long and illustrious career on both sides of the Atlantic, the roots of comedy, and his current perspectives on the industry. Saturday, 22 June 2002

John Cleese Comments on State of Today's Television Programming
In Banff, Cleese was invited to take part in a number of discussions and interviews on the subject of television programming. One common theme was how television executives have dropped their gut instincts for by-the-numbers decision making. Saturday, 22 June 2002

Sideshow Toy Unveils New Holy Grail Action Figures
Sideshow Toy, Inc. has added a number of new figures to their Monty Python & the Holy Grail line-up. Set for release later this year, the new figures are rapidly expanding this very successful series. Soon, we might be able to re-enact the entire film in our living rooms. Now suppose we build a small wooden badger... Wednesday, 26 June 2002

Makers of Graham Chapman Biopic Allowed to Use His Diaries
The producers of a new film about Graham Chapman have been given permission to use his personal diaries. The diaries will now form the basis of the film. Wednesday, 26 June 2002

Cleese Q's Up
Despite what seemed as a torch-passing scene in 1999's 'The World Is Not Enough,' Cleese didn't expect to be promoted so soon to the role of 'Q'. Cleese explains his pact with Desmond Llewelyn about the head of Q-Division. Wednesday, 26 June 2002

Palin in Baltimore for BBC Documentary on Matisse
Michael Palin is filming a documentary about two Baltimore (Maryland) sisters — Claribel and Etta Cone — who assembled one of the most important collections of paintings by Henri Matisse. The documentary will air in the UK in September. Friday, 28 June 2002

Cleese Unveils Plaque at Freud's London Home
John Cleese and his wife, Alyce Faye, on 28 June unveiled a commemorative plaque on the north London home of the founder of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud. Friday, 28 June 2002

Daily Llama Joins PythOnline
PythOnline has 'acquired' the Daily Llama and its webmaster, Hans ten Cate, in a move to expand Pythonline's offerings of timely and behind-the-scenes information to fans. PythOnline will be maintained by Darryn Hall and Hans under the auspices of the Python Office in London. Tuesday, 2 July 2002

Eric Idle Honors George Harrison at Hollywood Bowl
Eric Idle was at the Hollywood Bowl last Friday, 28 June, to induct George Harrison into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame. Eric sent us the text to his speech. Wednesday, 3 July 2002

Gilliam's Aussie Cartoon Fans Celebrate Past Work
Terry Gilliam and his Flying Circus animations were honored at the 2002 Melbourne International Animation Festival. PythOnline's webmaster, Darryn Hall, was a guest at the event. Wednesday, 3 July 2002

Jones, Cleese, and Others Pay Tribute to Barry Took
Monty Python godfather Barry Took has been remembered as a "comedy genius" by friends and stars at a memorial service in London. Terry Jones and John Cleese were there at St. John's Wood Church in north London for the service on Wednesday. Saturday, 6 July 2002

Cleese Makes Entertainment Weekly's 2002 "It" List
Entertainment Weekly's sixth annual "It" issue celebrates the most creative people in the entertainment industry. Lo and behold, John Cleese is featured, with a nice photo at his home no less. Read why EW thinks Cleese is "it" this year. Saturday, 6 July 2002

Terry Jones's Hidden History Documentaries to Air on Discovery Europe, July 14
Terry Jones' documentaries Hidden History of Egypt and Hidden History of Rome will be airing this Sunday, July 14, on Europe's Discovery Europe channel (8:00 PM and 9:00 PM GMT). The two specials aired on the American Discovery Channel in January and are finally seeing airtime in the UK and neighboring countries. Thursday, 11 July 2002

Gilliam Hits the Big Screen
Lost in La Mancha, the amazing documentary about Terry Gilliam's even-more amazing attempt to film The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, is touring film festivals at the moment. Here are some official UK release dates and the latest news from Terry himself. Thursday, 11 July 2002

US Air Force Academy Officers Suspended for Performing Monty Python Sketch
Two Air Force Academy officials have been placed on temporary leave and an investigation has been launched into complaints after cadets performed a Monty Python skit at a pregraduation party. Sunday, 21 July 2002

Lost in La Mancha Producer Lucy Darwin Shares Her Journal
Lost In La Mancha had it's London Premiere on July 25. Producer Lucy Darwin tells us exclusively about the incredible week leading up to the event, which was attended by Terry Gilliam, Michael Palin, and a special appearance by Johnny Depp. Wednesday, 31 July, 2002

Monty Python Goes to Paris
Paris is now even gayer thanks to Les Pythons and their French stage version of Monty Python's Flying Circus. Terry Gilliam tells PythOnline readers that this is "Python reborn with garlic and a gal. I've seen the show and liked it." Wednesday, 31 July, 2002

SideShow Toy Adds Swamp Castle to Holy Grail Action Figure Line-Up
SideShow Toy has announced that they've added two further figures to their Holy Grail action figure line-up. This winter expect the King of Swamp Castle and Prince Herbert to your home. Sunday, 25 August 2002

John Cleese's The Human Face Receives Two Emmy Nominations
The 54th annual prime-time Emmy award nominations were announced on July 18, 2002 in Los Angeles. The Human Face, With John Cleese scored two nominations in the categories of non-fiction programming. Sunday, 25 August 2002

PythOnline Exclusive: John Cleese to Appear in Charlie's Angels 2
John Cleese will be featured in Charlie's Angels 2: Halo, the sequel to the very successful 2000 film. Cleese's role will involve about a week's worth of filming, and he will be in several scenes, playing the father of one of the Angels. Sunday, 25 August 2002

Michael Palin to Release Book for the Blind
Michael Palin is to be the first British author to release a new work as a talking book before it comes out in print. Palin will publish Sahara, which recounts his travels across the Sahara Desert, as an unabridged book on tape. Wednesday, 4 September 2002

Neil Innes Delivers Witty Dities and Ego Warriors
Phil Stubbs, proprietor of the Terry Gilliam website, Dreams, has written a nice review of Neil Innes's Ego Warriors show, which recently played at the 2002 Edinburgh Festival. Wednesday, 4 September 2002

Monty Python Prequel to be Released on DVD in Europe
The 1968 John Cleese film, How to Irritate People, is to be released on DVD in September. The special edition will include a new interview with David Frost, who originally produced the film. Tuesday, 10 September 2002

Michael Palin to Tour and Promote Sahara Book
Michael Palin will be touring bookstores and other literary venues to promote his new book, Sahara, starting this month. Tuesday, 10 September 2002

Palin & Jones to Participate in Tribute to Spike Milligan
British comedy stars are to pay tribute to Spike Milligan in a fundraising gala. Tribute To Spike will take place on September 15 at London's Guildhall. Tuesday, 10 September 2002

Los Angeles Museum Runs Terry Gilliam Tribute
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is hosting a film tribute dedicated to our resident visionary, Terry Gilliam. The festival, entitled Tilting at Windmills: The Fantastical Worlds of Terry Gilliam runs over the course of several weekends starting November 15. Wednesday, 16 October 2002

Palin Travels to Cyber-Space
Michael Palin has officially unleashed himself and his brave crew of explorers on cyber-space. The site, Palin's Travels (www.palinstravels.co.uk), is more than a website; it is an online travelogue/documentary/how-to/where-to and for-how-much travel experience that promises to inform and entertain at the same time. Wednesday, 16 October 2002

John Cleese and KHJ... Men of Steel?
In what must surely be one of the most bizarre and surprising associations in recent Python memory, John Cleese is set to co-write a 96-page, graphic novel Superman adventure for DC Comics. Monday, 11 November 2002